Patriots

NFL Rumors: Where Tom Brady, Patriots stand on contract talks entering free agency

Patriots

We're hitting the home stretch on Tom Brady Watch, as teams can begin courting the soon-to-be-free agent at 12 p.m. ET on Monday when the NFL's legal tampering window opens.

But it doesn't sound like Brady and the New England Patriots are nearing the finish line.

Brady doesn't have "anything close" to a new contract with the Patriots as free agency approaches, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Sunday night on "SportsCenter."

Schefter insisted the lack of productive talks between Brady and head coach Bill Belichick is a sign Brady may be headed elsewhere.

"There haven't been any substantial contract negotiations. There hasn't been anything that resembles a deal," Schefter said. "Why do people think now that all of a sudden, at the 24th hour, something's going to get done that hasn't gotten done in the previous weeks and months?"

Our Tom E. Curran reported earlier this month that Brady and Belichick had spoken about his upcoming free agency, but that the discussion "wasn't particularly productive."

Curran reported a similar state of affairs Sunday, noting Belichick's "foot-dragging" in kicking off negotiations and that there hasn't been much change in talks since that early March phone call.

It's worth noting the Patriots have been productive with other pending free agents, locking up defensive back brothers Jason and Devin McCourty and special teams ace Matthew Slater before unrestricted free agency begins March 18.

 

So, if Brady and New England can't work things out, where would the 42-year-old quarterback go?

NBC Sports' Phil Simms reported Sunday the San Francisco 49ers no longer have interest and that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the only team besides the Patriots in the hunt.